Bollywood actor Kalki Koechlin became the latest member to join a small league of Pondicherrians who have been honoured with the distinction of Chevalier dans l’ Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) .
The Pondicherry-born actor was conferred the award – the highest civilian order of merit in France- for ‘enhancing Indo-French ties in cinema’. Alexandre Ziegler , Ambassador of France to India, presented her with the medal on Friday in Mumbai.
Delighted to have conferred the French distinction of Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters to #Kalki Koechlin who has contributed to enhancing Indo-French ties in cinema. Félicitations Kalki ! 🇫🇷🇮🇳 pic.twitter.com/sDdrDJRwsU
— Alexandre Ziegler (@FranceinIndia) June 22, 2018
The actor who has played unconventional roles with aplomb , is best known for films like Dev D, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani and Margarita with a Straw, for which she bagged a National Film Award- Special Jury Award. Kalki has also written, acted and directed several plays . She is vocal on several issues, particularly gender equality.
Born to parents of French descent in Puducherry, Kalki is visibly in touch with her small-town roots as she narrates in this tour of her Pondicherry house.
Earlier this year, along with Pondicherry brand Hidesign , Kalki designed a distinctive collection of bags reflecting the personality of both the actor and the brand.
Other recipients of the French order of merit who have a Pondicherry connection include medical practitioner V. Nallam, artiste Raghunath Manet and Sanskrit scholar N.S Ramanuja Tatacharya of the French Institute of Pondicherry, among others.